Balancing Cholesterol — Nourish the Liver, Transcend

A full 80% of the cholesterol in your body doesn't come from the food you eat. It's produced in your liver. Here lies one of the secrets of the Maharishi Ayurveda approach to healthy cholesterol levels, an approach that gets to the root of the issue.

Supporting liver health is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself against bad cholesterol — the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) that carries cholesterol into your bloodstream and in excess can lead to clogged arteries. The Maharishi Ayurveda approach focuses on balancing the liver through herbs, diet and lifestyle changes. When your liver is in balance, it produces more of the good kind of cholesterol — (HDL) or high-density lipoprotein, which carries LDL cholesterol out of the bloodstream. This helps protect the arteries from buildup. How much "good" and how much "bad" cholesterol your body produces depends on one thing: how well your body metabolizes fats.

The traditional ayurvedic herbs in Cholesterol Protection are nourishing to the liver and support your body's ability to metabolize fats, support proper liver function, balance bile secretion and help normalize the total cholesterol levels in your blood.

Cholesterol levels in the blood rise slightly with age, and women generally have a higher HDL cholesterol level than men. Cholesterol levels can also run in families. Besides monitoring your cholesterol levels, it's important to follow a healthy ayurvedic diet and daily routine to enhance and balance your fat metabolism. Remember — cholesterol is not inherently bad for you. In fact, when combined with another lipid, triglyceride, it forms some of your body's most important building blocks, structuring cells and forming natural steroid hormones. It also manufactures Vitamin D, which controls calcium absorption, protects your bones and raises energy levels.

The Maharishi Ayurveda approach to healthy cholesterol also includes the practice of the Transcendental Meditation® program, which published scientific research has shown to have significant benefits for overall cardiovascular health and balancing cholesterol levels. To read more click here.

The following are several ayurvedic tips for balancing cholesterol:

  • Avoid consuming fermented foods such as alcohol or vinegar.
  • Avoid foods that contain chemicals, preservatives, additives, artificial flavors and colors. These can damage the liver's efficiency.
  • Eat a high-fiber, vegetarian diet rich in fresh organic fruits, vegetables (especially leafy greens), nuts, whole grains, and whole cereals such as oatmeal to lower cholesterol.
  • Limit fat in your diet, but don't try to cut it out completely.
  • Reduce saturated fats, such as butter, coconut oil and the fat in red meats.
  • Avoid all trans fats, including hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils found in margarine and in most processed breads, crackers, cereals and desserts.
  • Choose fresh foods cooked with small amounts of unsaturated fats such as organic olive oil.
  • Include more walnuts in your diet. Some studies have shown that walnuts can significantly reduce cholesterol levels in the blood.
  • Season your meals with turmeric, cumin, coriander, fennel and clove, as these improve fat metabolism.
  • Use Calming Vata, Cooling Pitta or Stimulating Kapha Spice Mix to correct any existing imbalances.
  • Research indicates that eating cold water fish high in omega-3 fatty acids can lower triglyceride levels and improve heart health. Other sources of omega-3 fatty acids include flaxseeds, walnuts, soybean oil, cod liver oil, and fish oil. Be careful to choose mercury-free fish and fish oils.
  • Avoid carrying excess body weight, especially when the fat is concentrated around the midriff.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Drink plenty of warm water throughout the day to help flush out toxins.
  • Take one teaspoon of psyllium husks in a cup of water each night, or include high-fiber bran in your diet.
  • Avoid excessive salt in your food.

The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or e-mail us for the number of a physician in your area. Check with your doctor before taking herbs or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing.